Teacher

Manon Mulckhuyse

Teacher

E-mail: m.g.j.mulckhuyse@vu.nl

After studying Psychology at the University of Amsterdam, I obtained my PhD in Cognitive Psychology in 2009 at the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam.  During my PhD, I worked on the interaction between bottom-up and top-down driven visual and attentional selection processes under the supervision of Prof. dr. Jan Theeuwes. I also spent 4 months at UCL to work on a TMS study under the supervision Prof. dr. Nilli Lavie and Prof. dr. Vincent Walsh. Having completed my PhD, I expanded my line of research towards the role of emotion in attention and perception. I obtained a Rubicon grant to work with Prof. dr. Geert Crombez at the Experimental Clinical Psychology Department at Ghent University. At the end of this period, I received a VENI grant to study the underlying neural processes involved in emotional modulation of visual spatial attention. I conducted this research at the EPAN lab of Prof. dr. Karin Roelofs at the Donders Institute in Nijmegen. Since 2017, I have been teaching and supervising students at the Clinical Psychology department of Radboud University and students Informatiekunde at the UvA. Currently, I am a lecturer at the Cognitive Psychology department of the VU. RESEARCH INTERESTS I am interested in research related to emotional and cognitive interactions. Specifically, I am interested in the influence of threat on visual spatial attention and the underlying neural mechanisms of these processes. For example, if and how threatening stimuli are prioritized by the visual system is still a hotly debated issue in emotion research. Likewise, the neural correlates and time-course of modulatory effects of incidental anxiety on the perception of ‘neutral’ stimuli are still undefined. In my research, I use the method of fear conditioning to present threatening and non-threatening stimuli in various cognitive paradigms, such as visual search and spatial cueing. The general aim of my research is to bridge knowledge from the field of clinical psychology with cognitive science. We know, for example, that an attentional bias towards threat plays a role in maintaining and contributing to anxiety disorders. Moreover, research on attentional biases in a state of fear or anxiety is of particular relevance because attention gates important other cognitive processes, such as memory and learning.